Nagpur: Eateries are going to function normally on weekends even though markets and other non essential establishments would remain closed in city and district till March 7. As per the notification issued by M u n i c i p a l C o m m i s s i o n e r Radhakrishnan B for Nagpur city and District Collector Ravindra Thakare for rural parts of the district, the restaurants and allied activity can continue working during the partial lockdown period.
Earlier there was confusion whether weekend curbs would extend to restaurant and eateries but on Monday the situation was clarified by the administration who stated that they do not intend to put any restriction on their status for the weekend. The administration with a view to stem spread of COVID-19 has put several restrictions so that crowding can be avoided.
As part of the curbs, all markets, non essential establishments, weekly markets would remain closed on Saturday and Sunday as they tend to attract more visitors and this was identified as most potent condition for community transmission. The partial lockdown kicked into effect with immediate effect wherein all educational and training institutions suspended physical classes and switched over to on-line mode of teaching. Elsewhere weekly markets held on Monday was prevented by authorities and persuaded sellers to cooperate since the current conditions are not conducive for allowing large gatherings at one place. For the eateries weekend means assured business as families tend to go out for outing and enjoy dinner.
Of late the trend has caught fancy in urban places and people have made it a habit to patronage their favourite jaunts in city and those on outskirts. The thriving hotel and restaurant industry provides large scale employment and this revenue translates broadly across all sectors as vegetable and grocery too sees uptick due to people opting to dine outside. The investment in the restaurants and dining outlets have increased off late and many of them have started their business in last few years.
So any talks of lockdown on weekend sort of was a depressing news. For people also since city does not provide much options for entertainment, the trip few kilometres outside for dining on weekend provides much needed relaxation. Especially youth are the largest segment who makes it a regular habit to go for weekend outing and their patronage have provided assured business to restaurants on outskirts of city.
On all highways on outskirts of city there are plenty of options to choose form. Though the timings of restaurants and eateries is capped till 9 pm, the industry expects some relaxation as within the limited period it would be difficult to provide best of services to customers. And since people move out of homes a bit late in the evening, the 9 pm restriction they felt should be relaxed.